Haydn: The Creation
Jerusalem Theater, January 2
The Light shone in all its resplendent glory, contrasting forcefully with the
preceding Darkness, in the first day of Haydn’s Creation, as expressed by the
State Choir of Latvia, in the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra’s Liturgica
Conducted by Andres Mustonen, the choir stole the show. With
its full, rich sound, pure intonation, clear enunciation, split-second
discipline and infectious enthusiasm and exuberance, it celebrated the glory of
the Lord and the “joy of a New World” with intense persuasiveness.
the soloists, Hila Baggio’s clear soprano blended harmoniously with the
ensemble. In her solo parts, her strained efforts to reach the highest notes
were sometimes too obvious.
Mati Turi’s bright, friendly tenor provided a
striking contrast to the opening bass’ description of the gloomy
Noah Brieger’s sonorous, warm baritone made courageous efforts to
reach the lower regions, since Raphael’s role is actually intended for a basso
profundo descending down to portray the “worms creeping on the
The orchestra vivaciously illustrated the dramatic events of the
Uriel’s final stern admonition to Adam and Eve “not to wish
more than you have and to know more than you should” sounded as relevant today
as it was in the Creation’s time.
The choir’s concluding “Amen,” as an
encore, with an “A” held so long as to make the audience almost lose its breath,
brought this extraordinary performance to its stunning close.